The Welsh captain created luck after chance in his side’s 2-0 win over Turkey on Wednesday at the European Championship.
Bale passed over the defense Aaron Ramsey punched in before knocking it down in front of Turkish goalkeeper Ugurcan Cakir in the 42nd minute. Connor Roberts scored the second goal in the dying seconds of added time after Bale dribbled down the sideline from a short turn.
The victory brought the Euro 2016 semi-finalists one step closer to a place in the round of 16 with four points in Group A. Turkey have zero points after losing both matches.
“We all came, we all had a great performance and I felt we deserved the win,” Bale said. “If you had given us four points (over two games) at the start of the campaign, we would have bit your hand. “
Bale had a chance to score one himself in the 61st minute, but he sent his penalty over the bar after being tripped by Zeki Celik at the edge of the box.
“I felt I had played well all night. The missed penalty is my fault, of course I take responsibility, but I think it shows character, ”Bale said. “I continued, I continued to fight and I got the second assist to kill the game. “
The Welsh captain has not scored for his country in 13 games. His last goal came against Croatia in the Euro 2020 qualifiers in October 2019.
After the game, the team gathered around their captain for a rousing and emphatic victory speech. Bale later said he joked about his missed penalty and tried to bring the players and staff together.
“He’s wearing the armband for a reason. Everyone in life and in football goes through setbacks and setbacks and missing the penalty was a huge blow for him, ”said Wales coach Robert Page. “He showed a tremendous amount of courage to react in a positive way after the missed penalty. “
Ramsey had two chances earlier to score passes from Bale before finally giving his side the lead. He had a shot saved by the goalkeeper early on, then recovered the ball over the bar in the 24th in a head-to-head with Cakir.
“Three times lucky. I had a few opportunities, but there was nothing I could do about it, ”said Ramsey. “Now we can go to Italy (for the third game on Sunday) with full confidence and who knows what can happen there. “
Turkish captain Burak Yilmaz managed five shots but failed to convert any, especially when he missed a great opportunity early in the second half. He flew over the bar at close range when a corner was heading towards him.
Turkey enjoyed strong support from traveling fans and many locals in front of a crowd of nearly 20,000 in Azerbaijan, a close ally. The presidents of Turkey and Azerbaijan were present.
Turkey’s coach? Enol Gune? sharply criticized his side over Roberts’ late goal, accusing “a lack of attention” after Bale attempted a similar dribble from another corner moments before.
“We’re all sorry for this result,” Gune? said through an interpreter. “We couldn’t get any points in those two games so we’re sorry. This team could have played much better than this one. “